a real success story
Interview
Interview with the founder Ralf Nagel
When was mandigo started ?
Mandigo GmbH was founded in August 2002, following intensive work on the launch of the bibchip, which was selected Finalist of the BrandNew Awards six month previously. Being selected was what spurred us on the rapidly roll out the product and found mandigo.
How did you hit on the idea for the bibchip?
The original impetus behind the development of the bibchip came directly from the market itself. At the time, many runners, athletes and sportspeople were calling for a time-keeping system which would be simple, inexpensive and – of course- reliable to use during sports events. In response, we focused our development work on a passive transponder which could be integrated into the athlete’s usual start number and then thrown away afterwards.
 
Have you achievements been translated into market acceptance?
Yes, in terms of the number runners using our product, we became market leader in 2004. With a million athletes crossing the finishing line wearing our product, we achieved a meaningful milestone in a very short period of time. The current running season will see the bibchip being used at over 1.000 events in German speaking countries, which means that our product is also out in front in terms of the terms of the number of events.
 
What stage were you at when you received the BrandNew Award?
At the time, the bibchip had just been born. As engineers from the Fraunhofer Institute, we had developed a product which we believed to have an enormous potential in the highly-fragmented market of running events. We realized that the time had come to take a professional approach to the market launch of the bibchip. The BrandNew exhibition provided our team with an excellent opportunity to get our ideas and concepts in order. I think this is useful exercise in discipline for any newcomer, encouraging him to formulate his ideas in a way that will go down well with the market, and to present a professional image to the outside world.
 
How has mandigo fared since winning the award?
As predicted, mandigo’s bibchip has enjoyed rapid growth. Our success lies in the success of the event organizers, who can use the bibchip to offer a whole new quality of services the athletes: This enhances the attractiveness of the event, boosting the number of participants.
 
What did ispo do for you?
The ispo event enabled us to make a large number of constructive contacts, allowing us to maintain an excellent business network, which is now developing in a whole new direction. As the ispo becomes more international, it allows us to become part of a network within the sports community which is expanding towards China and Moscow: This new direction that the ispo is taking comes at the perfect time for us, as the bibchip is able to gain ground on the world market.
30 µm Chip
Chip in Papier
A new generation of smart labels and tickets
mandigo solutions are based on the use of thin transponders which are implanted in paper or plastic laminates using special processes. That is how the transponder becomes an integrated element of labels, goods packaging, tickets etc.
Information about the product is thus integrated into the object itself and can be momentarily be updated. This can be done in various ways.
Chip in paper sets new standards.
Example for ticketing: information about the customers can be stored directly on an entrance ticket. This allows for completely new marketing strategies. The visitor can be directly addressed, independent of a database and in real time.

Special thanks to the Fraunhofer Institute IZM for the nice REM picture.
bibchip in the race
mandigo GmbH
system integration for automatic identification

The mandigo GmbH is a spin-off of the Fraunhofer institute for reliability and micro-integration and was formed in 2002 by Ralf Nagel and Arno Stein. Their purpose was to exploit their know-how in transponder technology and push the development of automatic identification on the market. Priorities for the development of the bibchip were integration of the transponder into the start number and low production costs of single chips in order to use them in all kinds of mass sport events.

Today the convincing bibchip timer technology provides the basis for a unique network of bibchip timekeepers. Most runs in Germany are already timed using this technology – but the bibchip also has excellent references in Austria and Switzerland. By now this successful technology has begun to spread throughout Europe.
 
In an open franchise model the long-time experience of the timekeepers combined with the smart technology enable an unbeatable collective offer. In this connection bibchip is the basis for the professionalizing of running events.

system integration
rfid solution
Complex solutions for transponder systems
We create complete individual solutions according to our customers requirements.
From the transponder in a piece of paper to the required hardware right through to the software interface, service and support.
There are many examples for the implementation of transponder systems: one finds them in product logistics, ticketing, in areas for identification and security.
We offer three different services, individually or as a package.
From the initial analysis to the design and implementation through to the service and support.
Analysis
Together with our clients we analyse the technical requirements for the transponder system in their company:
Analysis of the specific application requirements as well as
The requirements for the compatibility with your existing DV
The analysis also takes into account economic factors:
Cost-benefit analysis
Technology roadmap
Timing for the implementation of the technology and
Taking into account the areas for expansion

Design
Different things are required of transponder systems which is why the solutions also have to be tailor made. We analyse the results of our research in your company and then design a system to your specifications.
We design individual solutions which we manufacture and test extensively before implementing it.

Implementation
We implement the transponder system in our clients company and test its functions directly so that we can immediately resolve any complications.

Service and support
Our offer also includes staff training and a comprehensive service. We continue to work together with our clients to optimise and extend their current systems.
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